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Who’s Next in Line to Run Campaign Arms?

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Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo
Sen. Michael Bennet


The Senate majority is up for grabs this cycle, but whoever takes the reins of the Senate campaign committees next year will likely have to contend with a small margin of power in the chamber.

Next cycle will be particularly tough for Senate Democrats, who had a hard enough time finding a chairman this cycle.

The chairmen are chosen differently in each caucus: The Democratic leader appoints the DSCC chairman, while the NRSC chairman is elected by the GOP Conference.

Traditionally, Senators up for re-election cannot take the chairmanship. So Senate Democrats can stop dreaming about tapping Sen. Mark Warner (Va.) because hes up in 2014.

Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee

Michael Bennet (Colo.)

He was the original consensus choice to take over the DSCC this cycle before Sen. Patty Murray (Wash.) was in the mix. But after winning a full term by just 2 points, Bennet declined to take the post.

His qualifications are obvious. He knows how to win a competitive race in a bad environment, hes a good fundraiser and hes well-liked within the caucus. His former top political aide, Guy Cecil, already serves as the DSCCs executive director, which would make for an easy transition.

So now that hes had some time to breathe since 2010, would he reconsider for 2014? Democrats can dream, but insiders say Bennet likes policy more than politics and wont take this job.

Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.)

She is on track to win two Senate races in consecutive cycles after her 2009 appointment took her from the House to the Senate.

While neither of her recent contests have proved to be tough electoral challenges, Gillibrand developed an incredible national fundraising network in the process. She would bring those connections, as well as her rainmaking skills in New York City, to the DSCC gig.

Gillibrand has shown ambition ever since she was elected to Congress in 2006 . This job would be a
steppingstone for her into Senate leadership, but it could also help her continue to build a national political network if she wanted to run for even higher office some day.

Amy Klobuchar (Minn.)

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